102218 | ITALY & BRITISH EAST INDIES. Pope Leo XIII silver Medal.
102218 | ITALY & BRITISH EAST INDIES. Pope Leo XIII silver Medal. Issued Year XVII (1894/5). On the founding of the Papal Seminary in British India at Kandy (43mm, 36.04 g, 12h). By F. Bianchi in Rome.
LEO XIII PONT MAX AN XVII, bust left, wearing zucchetto, mantum, and pallium / FILII TVI INDIA ADMINISTRI TIBI SALVTIS (your own sons, India, will be the heralds of your salvation), female personification of the Catholic Church seated right, holding cross and observing St. Francis Xavier (Francisco de Jasso y Azpilicueta), who instructs two natives; façade of the seminary in background; in two lines in exergue, XAVERIO • AVSPICE / ET • PATRONO. Edge: Some scattered marks, otherwise plain.
Bartolotti E894; Rinaldi 88. Mint State. Extremely brilliant and prooflike, with some deeper iridescence nearer the peripheries; some scattered hairlines are noted for completeness. An interesting papal issue with a strong East Asian connection.
With the papal encyclical "Ad extremis Orientis oras," Pope Leo XIII wished to build upon the work of the 16th century missionary in early colonial India, St. Francis Xavier (Francisco de Jasso y Azpilicueta). In 1893, a papal seminary was announced for the region of the British East Indies (India, Burma, and Ceylon), with it being established in Kandy on the island of Ceylon (now Sri Lanka). The seminary would continue in this location until 1955, when it moved to Pune, India.
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